19 July 2009

Good evening! Yes, it is I, the blog owner. I know it’s a little unusual but I am here to post an update - a brief one, but an update nonetheless! So, what’s been going on? Well, as you may have guessed by the lack of posts here dear reader, the answer to that is “not a lot”!

On the birding front a combination of work, bad weather and bad timing (on the birds behalf) has seen me miss a number of species that I would have loved to add to my “10-Mile List”. I have managed to add one more tick to the list since my last update - Spotted Flycatcher on June 28. The “10-Mile List” now stands at 131 species.

Last month I said that I’d try and post a few photos from around the garden, but I didn’t. Sorry Sarah! I did actually take the photos (using my phone) but never quite got around to uploading them. Here they are...

Despite the constant rain we’ve been getting the plants are surviving and have actually grown and continued to flower! If it ever stops raining we may be able to get out in the garden and enjoy them. Some hope!

Another victim of the rain was the Ashbourne Highland Gathering that should have taken place today; it was rained off. Luckily, the Saturday entertainment went ahead as scheduled and that meant we were able to see Clanadonia and also The Red Hot Chilli Pipers perform. Clanadonia played three “free shows” around the streets of Ashbourne during the afternoon before opening the main evening concert for the Chilli Pipers.

Clanadonia, on a rare visit south of the border, came to have fun and have fun they did! Their shows were full of the usual mix of great music and humour. Their antics when not performing had me smiling the whole day through. Quite what the sales girl in Costa coffee thought when a certain band member (in full tribal garb) tried to trade a Wombles CD for coffee I hate to think. When three of the band burst into the shop later in the afternoon and played a brief drum and pipe show the staff had their thoughts confirmed... crazy!

Yes, that IS me in the last picture! After years of avoiding being dragged up to “shake” with the band I finally got caught yesterday!

A brief rain shower interrupted a possible hunt for trolls, under a small bridge in the town, as the band did not want the drum skins getting too wet before the evening show. Seven tribal warriors then took over the local Boots chemists and stored their pipes and drums in the middle of the shop until the rain passed! No one seemed to object for some reason. As a thank you the band did play their final set of the afternoon outside the shop, and left them a free CD. Boots had been “tribalised”!

The Red Hot Chilli Pipers gig later in the evening was very well attended, close to 1000 people, and proved to be a great show. It was the first time I’d seen the band play live, having previously only seen them on TV and YouTube, but I’d love to see them again given the chance. The mix of bagpipes, drums, guitars and rock music may seem a strange combination but the Chilli Pipers carry it off to perfection.

So, there is my none too brief an update. I’ll be back again as and when something happens other than rain!

There are more photos from Ashbourne HERE!